Tell us about the social innovator behind this idea.
Tim Watkins is the Director of Journeys. Journeys was launched in April 2008, after operating as Depression Alliance Cymru (the Wales branch of Depression Alliance from 1997-2004, and an independent charity from 2005-2008).
Journeys provides information, training and support to around 10,000 people every year.
Tim Watkins’ achievements at Journeys include:
☼ Creating the Depression Busting™ self-management programme
☼ Producing the Taking Control audio self-help book
☼ Initiating the Healthy Minds at Work project
☼ Developing Distress to de-stress self-help days
☼ Running several high profile conferences.
Tim Watkins was appointed Director of Depression Alliance Cymru in December 2003, having previously worked as Development Officer since July 2001, and having been a volunteer from 1999.
He has a “chequered” career, having worked in a range of industries including farming, food, railways and even 6 months as a motorcycle courier!
A Graduate of University College of Wales Cardiff, he worked as a research and policy officer at the Welsh Consumer Council between 1990 and 1997, where he conducted research into diverse areas including:
☼ The aftermath of the North Wales floods of 1990
☼ Post-disaster recovery responses
☼ Speech therapy services in Wales
☼ Public transport in Wales
☼ Public attitudes to Sunday trading in Wales
☼ Quality of life in residential homes for older people
☼ Community care information provision
In 1996 he was affected by major depression that resulted in his having to leave work. Between 1997 and 2001 he was on the receiving end of services – good and bad – for people with depression. His experience left him determined to work to improve the situation for people affected by depression.
In addition to his work with Depression Alliance Cymru, Tim Watkins has recently participated in a series of seminars, organised by the Centre for Social Justice at Edge Hill University, to raise awareness of the needs of victims of major crimes and disasters.
In his spare time, Tim Watkins plays guitar and sings. For keeping healthy, he does yoga several times a week as well as cycling regularly.